How long will it take to renew my two year green card?

Renewing a two-year green card can take up to 17 months. File 90 days before expiration with an experienced immigration attorney.This is a great question, and no one knows the answer! Currently, USCIS publishes processing times of approximately 12-17 months. Our cases have been approved much quicker than 12-17 months, but most are pending at least that long. To cover the long processing times, USCIS sends I-751 applicants receipt notices that serve as 48-month extensions of the expiring green card. (Only a few years ago, USCIS issued receipt notices that only extended the expired card by 6 months! Clearly, USCIS is planning on deciding on your case any time soon!

USCIS processing times change from month to month for a variety of reasons cited by USCIS: the volume of applications received, staffing levels, and changes in USCIS policies or procedures.  

File your Form I-751 as soon as you are eligible, which is 90 days before the green card (Form I-551 expires). Do NOT file before 90 days because USCIS will immediately reject it, or worse, USCIS will wait over a year to deny it. 

To be successful on your green card renewal, you must prove that you were in a “real marriage,” that is, that you did not fake the marriage to get a green card. Green card renewal applications with Form I-751 are difficult to prepare and win, and USCIS is always looking for fraud in I-751 applications. Don’t file a I-751 application without an experienced immigration attorney!


If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of people traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call (617-676-0503) or email to get in touch.